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Accell calls the Power Cube a “2 in 1.” While in cube form, it sports six USB Type-A ports and two AC outlets. Gently teased apart, the bottom portion winds up with three AC outlets and two USB ports. (One AC plug is hidden while in use as a cube.) The top part has its own foldable AC plug and takes four USB ports with it.
The notion is that instead of managing and carrying separate USB chargers around when you need more capacity on the road or in different parts of your home at the same time, this compact attractive surge-protecting cube—3.2 inches on a side—lets you plug-and-play to play with plug options.
This review is part of TechHive’s coverage of the best surge protectors, where you’ll find reviews of the competition’s offerings, plus a buyer’s guide to the features you should consider when shopping for this type of product.
The USB ports are split into sets of two and four. The four-port section, part of top removable travel charger, maxes out at 24 watts (4.8 amps at 5 volts). The two-section is built into the cube’s base and can carry up to 12W (2.4A at 5V). The unit offers 540 joules of capacity (just under 600W). The cube proper has a 6-foot power cable that pivots 90 degrees within its frame and has a right-angle plug.
Its metal-oxide varistor (MOV) surge protection clamps at 500V on each of the three power legs, sufficient with modern equipment to provide protection. A “Protected” LED is lit so long as the varistors remain intact and protection in place. The company doesn’t state whether power stops flowing at that point, so you might need to keep your eyes peeled if you live in an area with frequent power spikes.
There’s no insurance policy included, and Accell offers just a one-year limited warranty against manufacturing defects for just the original purchaser.
The list price for the Power Cube is $54.99, which is far too high for what it offers. However, Amazon lists it for under $24, making it a far better deal if it fits into your particular set of home and travel needs.
The bottom line
The Accell Power Cube is a clever idea—but perhaps too clever to be a general solution to surge protection and charging organization. That’s particularly the case as it has just two AC jacks to replace the one it occupies on a wall outlet. But the flexibility and quantity of ports might sell it for the right person who can consolidate moderate-speed USB charging into a single location and have the bonus of a removable travel charger, too.